We’re closing in on the end of the first 10 rounds — and first two days — of the MLB draft. The Red Sox have selected just two high school players, one college senior, and the rest, all college juniors. They added to the mix with their ninth-round pick, a center fielder out of the University of Texas-Arlington, 22-year-old Matt McLean.
He’s a senior, the second Boston has selected in the first 10 rounds, and the reason for that is to — say it with me if you've been following along this far — to help pay for first-round pick Jason Groome. The slot value of pick 268 is $168,400, so if the Red Sox end up paying McLean something like $10,000, they get another $158,400 to put toward Groome’s top-five price tag attached to the 12th-overall budget.
There is a very good chance McLean is under slot, too, more so than anyone else the Sox have picked, because MLB.com’s presents had nothing at all to say about him. There is no video of him, he is unranked on Baseball America’s list — McLean is here for budgetary purposes first, what he can do on the field second.
That’s not a bad thing, and not an adverse judgment of McLean, either. It’s just how the system works with the draft budget. As for what information on McLean is out there, you’ll mostly have to live with stats. And since you shouldn’t scout stats, they won’t tell you much. Here they are all the same, though: he hit .337/.448/.374 and didn’t make an error all season long. He’ll be 23 years old in September, and is 5-foot-11, 190 pounds.
There is one pick left on day two: Boston's 10th-round selection at 298. The major question is whether the Sox get one last senior to help them pay for Groome, as McLean is doing, or if they try to grab one more high school player or junior in college before heading to day three and rounds 11 through 40.